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The Digital Music Era Brings Higher Revenue, According To RIAA Report

Last Updated: July 1, 2023
The industry is seeing growth coming with streaming and paid subscriptions this past year, according to year-end music industry review

In the new age of music consumption streaming created a new dynamic regarding income and various streams of income. According to Billboard,  paid subscription streaming revenue reached $10.2 billion over the course of the year; and industry revenues at wholesale reached $10.3 billion. 

According to the 2022 Year-End Music Industry Revenue Report, revenue grew a total of 6% from $15.0 billion in 2021 to $15.9 billion in 2022 in the U.S.“2022 was an impressive year of sustained ‘growth-over-growth’ more than a decade after streaming’s explosion onto the music scene,” RIAA chairman/CEO Mitch Glazier said in a statement. 

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Music lovers across the globe are returning to the roots of buying music projects but also are embracing the new age style of music consumption by partaking in streaming subscriptions. Streaming created the bulk of the revenue, with 84%, up from 83% in 2022. 

“Continuing that long run, subscription streaming revenues now make up two-thirds of the market with a robust record high of $13.3 billion,” Glazier said. “This long and ongoing arc of success has only been possible thanks to the determined and creative work of record companies fighting to build a healthy streaming economy where artists and rightsholders get paid wherever and whenever their work is used.”

The number of paid subscriptions in the U.S. reached 92 million, a shift of 9.6% from 84 million in 2021. According to the report, for the first time since 1987, vinyl LP units outsold the number of CDs, from 41.3 million to 33.4 million. 

The significant revenue growth continues to come from consumers who subscribe to streaming. The RIAA reported that in 2012, digital downloads made up 43% of the overall industry’s revenue; in 2022, that number was just 3%. The total digital revenue was $13.8 billion, up 6.0% from 2021 and 87% of the total business.


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